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Education Abroad and College Completion

Rachana Bhatt, Angela Bell, Donald L. Rubin (), Coryn Shiflet and Leslie Hodges
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Rachana Bhatt: University System of Georgia
Angela Bell: University System of Georgia
Donald L. Rubin: University of Georgia
Coryn Shiflet: Georgia Institute of Technology
Leslie Hodges: University System of Georgia

Research in Higher Education, 2022, vol. 63, issue 6, No 3, 987-1014

Abstract: Abstract While some stakeholders presume that studying abroad distracts students from efficient pursuit of their programs of study, others regard education abroad as a high impact practice that fosters student engagement and hence college completion. The Consortium for Analysis of Student Success through International Education (CASSIE), compiled semester-by-semester records from 221,981 students across 35 institutions. Of those students, 30,549 had studied abroad. Using nearest-neighbor matching techniques that accounted for a myriad of potentially confounding variables along with matching on institution, the analysis found positive impacts of education abroad on graduation within 4 and 6 years and on cumulative GPA at graduation. A very small increase in credit hours earned emerged, counterbalanced by a small decrease in time-to-degree associated with studying abroad. Overall, the results warrant conclusions that studying abroad does not impede timely graduation. To the contrary, encouraging students to study abroad promotes college completion. These results held similarly for students who had multiple study abroad experiences, and who have studied abroad for varying program lengths.

Keywords: College completion; Education abroad; International education; High impact practice (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
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DOI: 10.1007/s11162-022-09673-z

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